sabato 27 marzo 2010
Santa Maria Novella: Gothic with Italian Renaissance facade
In front of the railway station and two minutes walking far from Hotel Mario's, we can see the Church of Santa Maria Novella, a beautiful example of Gothic with Italian Renaissance façade.
"...Designed in the 1450's, [the facade of Santa Maria Novella] completed the exterior of a medieval church, and yet it has been rightly described as a 'great Renaissance exponent of classical eurhythmia,' for its dimensions are all bound to each other by the 1:2 ratio of the musical Octave. The marble panels, which produce a mosaiclike effect of discrete color patches on medieval Italian church exteriors... here contribute to a sense of rhythmic, geometric unity..."
— Joan Gadol. Leon Battista Alberti, Universal Man of the Early Renaissance. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1969. p112.
"From the trecento campaign, Alberti inherited the sepulchral niches with pointed arches, the lateral portals also enclosed by Gothic frames, and the geometrically patterned green and white marble revetment. It was this biochromatism—Tuscan Romanesque in origin and never out of favor in Florence—that Alberti chose as the departure for the revetment system of this new façade (c. 1456-70). Over it, he superimposed a series of tall and narrow arches to accommodate the vertical accent of the Gothic remnants. The arch and the capitals of the engaged order he shaped in a manner not Gothic but Romanesque-antique, thus making possible the introduction of the authoritative Classical language of the entrance, consisting of fluted pilasters framed by noble columns on tall dadoes—this in homage of the Roman Pantheon, a monument exhaustively studied by 'archaeologist' Alberti."
— Marvin Trachtenberg and Isabelle Hyman. Architecture: from Prehistory to Post-Modernism. p293-4.